On Friday 14th February, some of our Team made their presence felt at the Bristol Youth Strike 4 Climate gathering and march in Bristol, which was part of a nationwide Valentine’s Day strike organised by the UK Student Climate Network.
A crowd started to amass on the College Green in the city centre from around 10.30am. This peaceful gathering marked the one year anniversary of the strike marches the Bristol Youth group had coordinated. Alongside countless thousands of marching students, parents, teachers and more, they’ve raised awareness of climate change and the planet’s desperate need for system change.
The event was inspirational and peaceful of course and it was driven by a talented samba band who played solidly throughout the hour of the march. The event was one of 270 demonstrations expected to be taking place that day as part of the global protest called ‘Youth Strike 4 Climate’.
This year’s Bristol action had a timely theme of love. The striking attendees were encouraged to write a ‘Love Letter to the Planet’, listing all the things they adore about our world and suggesting the urgent actions Bristol City Council should be taking to mitigate climate change. The letters will be used for ideas in the group’s ongoing discussions with the council.
Our CEO, Tracey West, was invited to be one of the pre-march speakers. She animated the crowd with her usual passion and eco-optimism and generated a vocal response as she talked about trees and suggested simple ways to combat eco-anxiety.
Tracey commented: “Simon and I travelled up by train and on the platform, we met a young striker of about 11 who was heading to the march with his dad. He had a great homemade banner which he showed me with pride, but he looked as though he had the absolute weight of the world on his shoulders – that’s because he feels like he does.“
“Thankfully, young environmentalists around the world are seriously motivated and amazingly resilient. They’re just not standing for government inaction any more – quite the contrary – they’re marching for urgent change!”
There will undoubtedly be further peaceful gatherings and marches in Bristol. If you’d like to be part of their next event, keep an eye on their Facebook page.